Country Bedding Guide
What exactly is country bedding? Country bedding is simply a style of bed linen that is designed to accent traditional country or rustic style decor. The look is casual, comfortable, nostalgic and simple. Never fussy or pretentious. The style can range from romantic country cottage floral designs to masculine western looks. If you would like to learn more about country style bedding and how to use it in your home, read on! We've complied a list of commonly used terms and some helpful tidbits thrown in along the way.
The Quintessential Quilt
A quilt is a traditional bed covering with 3 layers- a decorative top layer; a backing; and some kind of batting sandwiched between the two. The top can consist of one piece of fabric (a wholecloth quilt), or it can consist of many different fabrics sewn together in a multitude of different patterns (a patchwork quilt.) The actual "quilting" refers to the stitches that bind all three layers together. The quilting part can be done by hand or by machine. The inner layer is generally cotton or polyester. Better quilts will use cotton fill and more quilting stitches per inch. All of the quilts we sell are 100% cotton and machine washable. We offer the quilts and accessories separately so you can create you own bedding ensemble with only the pieces you need. Most of our quilts have tons of matching accessories- shams, pillows, curtains, rugs, etc. Our quilts are very generously sized. For more info and to see our current quilt line up, visit our Country Patchwork Quilt Collection.
A wholecloth quilt would be any quilt that is not a patchwork. The top of the quilt consists of a solid piece of fabric, rather than a collection of different fabrics that are sewn together. A wholecloth quilt could be one solid color, or it could have a printed design. Wholecloth quilts can be very intricately stitched with complex designs and patterns. A good example of this would be the traditional French style matelasse boutis type of quilt. The gorgeous Abigail Quilt comes pretty close to the antique French quilts we have seen in this style. Wholecloth quilts tend to be a little more subtle in design and quite durable. These are also machine washable for easy care, and priced individually so you can pick and choose the pieces you need. Check out all of our Wholecloth Quilts, including our matelasse and floral quilts.
A comforter is a modern bedding invention also made of three layers. It's similar to a quilt, but thicker and more fluffy. Comforters are typically filled with synthetic fibers or down. The outer shell can be made from most any fabric- cotton, linen, suede, etc. The comforters we sell are currently all Western, and Rustic Cabin styles. The comforters are packaged as sets which include various coordinating accessories like pillow shams, toss pillows, and bedskirts. This makes decorating super easy- just open the box and make the bed. All the hard work of matching and coordinating has already been done. If you need to add matching window treatments or other accessories they're available individually. Our comforter sets are very durable and warm plus they're quite budget friendly considering all the pieces you'll receive in a set. Dry cleaning is recommended for all of our comforter sets. Check out all of our Country and Western Style Comforter Sets.
This is simply a decorative fabric envelope used to cover a comforter. Duvet covers keep your comforter clean and allow you to change your decor easily. Duvet covers generally have buttons or zippers for closure around the comforter. Duvets are also known as duvet covers or comforter covers. Using a duvet cover will of course require some type of filler- down comforters are very popular but many of the synthetic alternatives are also a great choice. Most of our duvet covers are made from cotton for easy cleaning. The great thing about a duvet cover is it's versatility. It can easily be filled with a super warm insert, or a lighter model for warmer seasons. Check out all of our Country Style Duvet Covers.
Good Old Fashioned Bedspreads
The bedspread is another traditional bedding item that is really making a come-back. Bedspreads are the thinner, one-sided numbers that were once popular in hotels and motels across the land. They drape gracefully to the floor and may have rounded edges at the foot of the bed to create even more drama. Bedspreads tuck around pillows at the top of the bed making pillow shams unnecessary. We carry woven cotton bedspreads and quilted cotton patchwork bedspreads (none of that scratchy polyester backed stuff!). Both are vintage inspired looks that feel wholesome to the touch, and are machine washable. Our Quilted Patchwork Bedspreads are generously cut for larger mattresses. View all or our Old Fashioned Bedspreads.
A coverlet is a loose term that can be used to describe most any top-of-the-bed treatment that is not a quilt, comforter or bedspread. A coverlet generally covers part of the bed, meaning it does not extend to the floor. A coverlet can be functional or merely decorative. The only items that we sell in this category would be the Homespun Coverlet, and the Homespun Patchwork Coverlet. These items are similar to small comforters, and must be dry cleaned. These can be used as a primary bed covering, but most often customers use these for extra warmth and color by folding them at the foot of the bed. Read more about our American made Homespun Coverlets.
A pillow sham is the decorative covering that is used on top of a bed pillow. Generally, pillows that are used for sleeping do not wear pillow shams. Shams are purely decorative items that can be filled with inexpensive filler pillow rather than the higher quality bed pillows used for sleeping. Traditionally, two matching pillow shams are used for most beds, but country decor is known for the abundance of pillows! Using a combination of coordinating shams, toss pillows and pillow cases will give that extra dose of country charm.
A king sham is a larger pillow sham that is intended to be used on a king size bed or a Cal king size bed. Many bedding manufacturers make these but some do not. When king shams are not available, use three standard size shams to fill a king size bed. Using two standard size shams on a king bed with result in a skimpy looking bed. We're seeing a trend towards using one king sham on smaller beds as an accent pillow of focal point. The look is very cute and easily accomplished. Check out these examples - Amherst King Sham On Queen Bed, and Beacon Hill King Sham On Queen Bed.
Bedskirts or Dust Ruffles
A bedskirt is used to cover the area below the mattress. Bedskirts sit between the mattress and the box spring, draping over the sides of the bed. To choose a bedskirt, it is essential to measure your bed first. Measure the distance from the top of your box spring to the floor. This is the drop length that you will be needing. Bedskirts are generally made in a gathered style or a more contemporary tailored style. We carry a ton of bedskirts in multiple sizes, colors and lengths. You're sure to find what you need in our Country Style Bedskirt Collection.
How do I choose a Country Bedding Set?
Now, that is a tough one. If you love rustic country style you're probably going to have a hard time with this decision! Country Cottage, Western, Rustic Lodge, Primitive Country- these looks are very hot right now and you'll find a lot of options. We suggest you pick a type of bedding first, based on practical considerations. Do you want a quilt, comforter, bedspread or duvet? Each of these options will look similar on the bed, but each style of bedding will come with it's own set of pros and cons. Quilts and bedspreads can be machine washed, but they are not as warm as a duvet cover filled with a fluffy down comforter. But maybe warmth is not your primary consideration... It all depends on your lifestyle and preferences. The bottom line- once you figure out what type of country bedding is best suited for you, you'll have a ton of options with plenty of downhome rustic charm. We offer bedding in every range of country - Country Cottage, French Country, Old Fashioned Country, Western, Rustic Lodge, Primitive Country, Americana Country... You name it, we got it! We love these products and we use them in our own home, so please don't hesitate to ask any questions you may have.
Choosing a country bedding ensemble can be hard work, but we're here to help!